A Commentary on Sessions and Commentaries
As a prominent user of Academia, here—
—I'm being asked about the new beta Sessions tool in the website. I received an invitation to try these and I've just got one session going on—this paper on Hegel —with more comments than all my other publications lumped together (comments in my blog I mean).... Still, people might get fed up with receiving kind robotic invitations to discuss one's contributions; so success is not guaranteed once the novelty fades.
Anyway here's my opinion:
Regarding the beta format of the Sessions. It's a welcome addition, and one which enhances Academia's role as an academic social network. I suppose perhaps Academia does not want to become a mega-blog and that's why the Sessions are limited in time and visibility. So if you keep it this way the species will be an ecologically distinct species in the online forest, if that's a priority. This may either catch on or remain a marginal tool, that's unforeseeable and that's that. That said, as a tool it is much too rigid from the user's standpoint. I would like a more flexible approach—to be able to control the opening and closing down of the sessions at any date, or period of time, and for all papers. Not a great idea perhaps, I know I just said that you might call that blog commentaries.... but hey, flexibility's one of the beauties of blogs. People may find it irritating or just plain absurd to interrupt a conversation or argument in case it's going on fine, and Sessions for different disciplines or subjects or communities may require different rhythms. So, flexibility please! But it's fine too if you choose to keep it this way, after all I can't complain about the price tag! So thanks to you all for a great (an immense) website.